Numismatic Writer Alan Herbert Dies|
January 24, 2013
This article was originally printed in Numismatic News.
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Longtime “Coin Clinic” columnist Alan Herbert, 86, died Jan. 19 at the Fort Meade Veterans Hospital near Belle Fourche, S.D.
He had been battling bladder cancer in recent months.
Also known as the Answerman because of the “Coin Clinic” question-and-answer column, Herbert began his professional numismatic writing career with a column for error and variety collectors in Numismatic News in late 1968 called “Odd Corner.”
It was a natural progression from a weekly column that he wrote for the Collectors of Numismatic Errors, one of the forerunner organization’s to today’s Combined Organizations of Numismatic Error Collectors of America.
He began collecting coins in 1963 and served as secretary of CONE and CONECA 1967-1991. He was the first person installed in the CONECA Hall of Fame.
He considered his crowning achievement in the error field to be the compilation of the PDS System for cataloging minting varieties. He cataloged and photographed examples from more than 9,000 different coin dies.
He also produced a similar system for paper money errors.
All the while he was pursuing a career in radio and TV that spanned 27 years.
In the mid 1970s he moved to Germany briefly. His first wife, Lisa (Liselotte), whom he had met while stationed in Germany after World War II was from Hamburg. She died in 1992.
After returning to the United States and then going back to Germany where he served as European Bureau Manager for Krause Publications, he moved to the home office in Iola, Wis., in 1987 where he worked until he retired from full-time employment in 1994. While in Iola he served two years as editor of Coins magazine among his many other duties.
In the 1980s he took up responsibility for the “Coin Clinic” column, which he continued to hold until his death.
A life member of the American Numismatic Association, he was elected to the board of governors in 1999. He lost his seat in 2001, regained it 2003-2008, and made a second comeback in 2010 by serving an unexpired term of a governor who had resigned.
He was honored by the ANA with the Medal of Merit in 1994 and the Glenn Smedley Award in 2001. Numismatic News made him a Numismatic Ambassador in 2004.
He was given the Numismatic Literary Guild’s Clemy Award in 1997.
A Ceremonial Tribute was scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Friday, Jan. 25, at the Christian Life Center in Belle Fourche Internment was to be at Pine Slope Cemetery in Belle Fourche.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests gifts to the Josephine Herbert memorial at the Christian Life Center. She was his second wife who died of lung cancer in 2001. He was also predeceased by an infant son in 1952.
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